It can probably be argued that a county fair is a holdover from the days when agriculture was front and center in most communities across the U.S. and the business of agriculture — showing prized animals, stock auctions — was a community focal point. That’s less the case in many regions today, but the fair still has value. We need to remember — and children need to learn — where our food and fiber comes from. And maybe it’s because I’m an animal lover, but I believe that humans have a natural affinity for animals. Fairs give some of us a fleeting chance to touch skin to fur and feathers and see animals that aren’t part of our daily lives.
People line up to touch. They ooh and aah over softness or texture, snuggle where they can.
Children have a chance to see and learn, often with babies that are just the right size, without the typical “don’t touch!” warnings.
And the interaction goes both ways.